Minnehaha County Commission's lone Democrat teamed up with other candidates running on the Democrat ticket in November at a Thursday morning press conference, center piecing a new slogan: "No eminent domain for private gain."
Jeff Barth, who is running against South Dakota Public Utilities Commission chair Chris Nelson this fall, spoke about a need to protect landowners from big corporate interests in their fight against Summit Carbon Solutions $4.5 billion CO2 pipeline project.
At a local Democrat-led press conference in the downtown Sioux Falls library, Barth, who is a Minnehaha County commissioner, accused Republican chairman Dan Lederman, a proponent of Summit's pipeline, of prioritizing private gain over public interests.
"I'd like to know how much Dan Lederman is getting paid," Barth said Thursday morning, at a press conference held in the downtown library. "How many legislators has Dan Lederman sold to the pipeline company? Unclear."
The event attracted a group of 20 attendees, clapping for Barth's slogan during his speech. Barth believes the Republican party is no longer representing the people but instead seeks to benefit pipeline companies like Summit Carbon Solutions, an Iowa-based agricultural energy company.
In his speech, Barth reminded the public of his past 16 years as a county commissioner, where he weighed in on planning and zoning issues by approving parks, pipelines and hog operations.
Other Democrat candidates running this November, including Jamie Smith for governor, Stephanie Marty for state auditor, Tom Cool for secretary for state and John Cunningham for state treasurer, also appeared or spoke to the public on their campaign promises.
"Elect me to the PUC," Barth told the public in closing. "These pipelines will scar land forever and threaten our very lives."
This article originally appeared on Sioux Falls Argus Leader: South Dakota PUC candidate alleges CO2 pipeline backer paid by company